My Hiatus

Hello everyone, long time no see! 

I apologize for not posting anything in an uber long time. I've been so busy with school, work, and everything in between. I'm planning to come back as I have many great posts to share! There will be recipes, beauty posts, and hopefully some videos coming up soon! 

This is my posting schedule: 

Weekend Baking on Sunday at 10:00 EDT 

Makeup Monday on Monday at 1300 EDT 

A food post on Wednesday at 1300 EDT

Book reviews on Saturday at 10:00 EDT 

And there will be miscellaneous posts between the week. 

Please subscribe to my blog, leave comments if there is anything you'd like to see, and follow me on instagram & twitter

Makeup Monday: Korres Milk Proteins Foaming Cream Cleanser

Today's Makeup Monday post is all about skincare. I think that makeup and skincare go hand in hand, and that skincare is so very important. About four months ago I started using the Korres Milk Proteins Foaming Cream Cleanser, and I have to say that I love it! 

This cleanser is so soothing on the skin and very gentle. But in the same breath, it gets the job done. My skin is balanced and hasn't looked better (except for that last chocolate binge during you-know-what that destroyed it haha). I would recommend this cleanser to just about anyone, especially those who have sensitive skin who still combat spots here and there. I like that it's foaming since it works well with my Clarisonic. 

Overall I give this cleanser two thumbs up and a recommendation to anyone who needs a new cleanser in their life! Follow me on instagram and twitter

Makeup Monday: A Bronzer for All the Fair-Skinned Ladies

Good afternoon everyone! I am introducing a new series called Makeup Monday, where I'll be posting about my favourite makeup products, looks, or anything else beauty related. Today's post is for all those fair-skinned ladies out there (like myself) who want a bit of a glow in the summer time. I am super pale, and I'm proud to say it. I don't really tan, I just burn. And when I burn, I become a lobster. With that being said, I stay out of the sun as much as I can, but I still want my face to have some life in it.

This bronzer is perfect for my skin tone as it provides a glow without being 1. orange or 2. excessively dark or 3. super duper shimmery. These three things give the whole bronzer thing away which is why this bronzer is just plain perfect. The Body Shop does some really nice cosmetics that are ethically produced (always a good thing). And it won't break the bank. You can shop for it here. The bronzer of my choice is in the shade 01 Light Matte. If you're a fair-skinned lady like myself, give this bronzer a try. If you have any good bronzer choices, leave them down in the comments below! 

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Nivea Sensitive 3-in-1 Micellar Cleansing Water

Is it possible to have a cleanser that is gentle but effective? Yes, the answer is yes. Nivea has created the most wonderful cleanser in a body that makes cleansing your skin easy and very affordable.

This is the first micellar water I've tried, partly because the rest of the lot are quite pricey. I picked up this amazingness for around $10.00, and it was such a great buy! This stuff will last you a long time as you only need a little to take a whole face of makeup off. It's moisturizing on the  skin, and even tones! It transformed my outlook on micellar waters in general, and I'm completely converted to this 3-in-1 method. If you're looking for a product to take off makeup and the day's grime, definitely give this a purchase. You will not be disappointed! 

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This is an introduction to my pup, Bingley. He's a yorkie bichon who has a little personality, and he deserves some love. (He really enjoyed making this vlog) Give this video a thumbs up if you like it and leave any comments down below! Please subscribe to my channel!

Spring/Everyday Makeup Look

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I absolutely adore makeup and all things beauty, yet I rarely where the stuff. When I do wear makeup, I like to keep it simple, light, and very fresh looking. Today's post is on my spring/everyday makeup look.

I used the Clinique CC Cream in Very Light as my base. I did a review on it a couple of weeks ago and you can see it here. And I put it on with the Sonia Kashuk Buffing Brush No. 130. It's a great brush that was around the $10 mark; definitely a steal! I used the Rimmel Wake Me Up Concealer under my eyes and on any blemishes I had. I really like the Eco Tools Foundation Brush to put on concealer. It's weird I know, but I like how big it is for under my eyes. For blush I used the Sephora Blush in Romantic Rose No. 10 and put it on with the e.l.f. Contour Brush (a $3 brush!!!). Usually for a regular day I won't wear mascara, but if I'm really trying to look good, I'll put on the Covergirl Full Lash Bloom Mascara. This mascara leaves your lashes so long and soft; they end up looking really natural which is always a good thing. And finally I used the Clinique Chubby Stick in Super Strawberry on my lips for a great colour and moisturizer.

This look is really simple and won't melt off in the warm heat. It makes you look natural but still bright and fresh. Let me know what you think in the comments below. If you'd like to see me in action, click here. 

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Here's a vlog about the day in the life of my dog Bingley! Subscribe to my YouTube channel & give it a thumbs up if you like it!  

The Body Shop's Camomile Cleansing Butter & Mother's Day Prep

Mother's day is right around the corner (just in case you forgot, its this Sunday May 10th), and if you need some ideas for gifts or what to do with your mom, look no further! Here's my post from last year that will definitely help you out. cleansingbuttercleansingbalm2 For today's beauty post, I'm raving about the Body Shop's Camomile Cleansing Butter. This stuff is like gold! You take a little bit in your hand, rub it together, and massage it into your face. It turns into an oil/foaming mixture and takes off even the most stubborn eye makeup. It moisturizes your skin, and you can just rinse it off. If its a late night for me, I'll just cleanse with this and not do anything else. My  skin in the morning looks great and isn't dry at all even though I haven't used moisturizer (and I have dry skin). It's regularly $16, but I got it for half off, which is such a steal! It lasts forever, and can rival any high end brand! Definitely worth a purchase if you're looking for an all-in-one makeup remover!

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Tresemme Volumizing Dry Shampoo

Good afternoon everyone! As I continue with these weekly beauty posts, I have to include some dry shampoo. I live off of dry shampoo. I have very straight, flat, and consequently, oily hair. I usually wash my hair every 2-4 days, and definitely need some help to extend the life of it. Before the dry shampoo rage, I would use baby powder with cornstarch, and it still works well when I'm in a pinch. This dry shampoo by Tresemme is great for flat and straight hair. It adds volume, has a great gentle scent, and really takes away the oiliness. It doesn't make my roots feel more gritty. I use it on bobby pins if I need some extra hold, and can use it on clean hair if you're putting your hair in an updo. It's overall just an amazing dry shampoo, and doesn't break the bank. I use small cans of it and keep them in every bag I have. What's your favourite dry shampoo?

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Maybelline Bad to the Bronze Colour Tattoo Eyeshadow

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There's a lot more beauty posts up on the blog these days. And this is because I've found some beauty staples that are amazing and affordable. Today's review is on the Maybelline Colour Tattoo Eyeshadow in Bad to the Bronze.  badtothebronze4 This shade is perfect for daytime. It is perfect for nighttime. It is perfect for layering or wearing by itself. It is all around amazing. It's so versatile, and is really easy to apply. I just apply it with my fingers on my eyelid. You can make it smudgy if you want to achieve a smoky eye look or use it as a little oomph for everyday. It also comes in way under $10 and I'm sure it will last forever. This shade is a great neutral for anyone, and since it has a little bit of shimmer it really does well at opening up the eye. Definitely worth the buy!

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Skin Detox

I should start off by saying that most of my days involve detoxing my skin. With that I mean that I barely wear makeup and I try to be as conscious as I can with what I put into my body. January is a perfect time for a skin detox as the holidays involved lots of makeup, late nights, and lots of treats. There are a couple of things you can do to really give your skin a break so let's get started! The first thing you can do is make sure you cleanse and moisturize your face (and body). A good cleanse starts off with using warm water or a hot cloth to open your pores, and is followed by a gentle massage on your face. I'm a firm believer in toner, so I always follow my cleanse with it to ensure that my pores are completely closed. During the blistering cold it is important to use a thicker moisturizer to really protect your face, and also one that has an SPF in it. There is still lots of sunlight in the winter that can damage your skin. A skin detox is only possible when your skin is protected properly.

Another thing you can do is keep makeup minimal, or don't wear it at all! Try for a couple days of no makeup to let your skin really breathe.

A hot bath or shower can also be really cleansing. Add sea salt or epson salt to a bath or even a foot bath to rid yourself of inside toxins. It'll allow you to relax and will do good to your inside.

When it comes to inside out beauty, water is the best to really cleanse your skin. I drink about 10-12 500 mL bottles of water per day to help with hydration and detoxing. Also try a gentle food detox for a couple of days that involves lots of produce.

Hopefully you find these tips useful in detoxing your skin and overall in inside out beauty. Follow me on instagram @melodyannep and bloglovin!

This photograph was taken from last year's major ice storm. It was so destructive, but also left some beauty with its ice creations. (we are thankful for this winter so far!) IMG_7576

LUSH Mint Julips Lip Scrub: An Essential

The other day I purchased the Mint Julips Lip Scrub from LUSH. It was $9.95, and worth every penny. It expires in a years time, and I've deemed it an essential for not only cold weather, but the entire year. It's safe to say that I love this product! I'm a fan of LUSH products, and I will have another post for some other purchased products coming up. I like that everything they use is fresh, natural, is not tested on animals, and mostly everything is vegan. Their products are not toxic and you're really putting your money into good health for yourself. The scrub does exactly what you think it does. It takes off all those nasty chapped pieces and white bits of dry lips. You take a little bit and rub it over your lips. You move it around until all those nasty bits are gone, and you can lick it up! Mint Julips is a nice minty and sugary flavour that slightly pumps up your lips and leaves you with a nice minty taste in your mouth. There are other flavours as well, like Popcorn, and I can't wait to try them. I am completely satisfied with this product, and I can't believe I did without it before!

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This lip scrub is a must have for cold weather, and will make the world of a difference to you (well, your lips)! If you have it, let me know what you think about it. If you have other LUSH products, let me know which ones you love because I'd like to try them!

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Flower Beauty

I'm a huge fan of Drew Barrymore. I love her films, how she looks on the red carpet and now I love her new beauty line. Flower Beauty offers high quality cosmetics at ridiculously great prices. It launched at Walmart in mid October. Her line of products includes everything under the sun. Powders, foundations, concealers, lipsticks and glosses, eyeshadows, brushes, you name it! I picked up three of her products, each under $10, and I am now a lover of her line. Last weekend I had a wedding, and last minute realized I didn't have the dark burgundy lipstick I thought I had. So I headed over to my neighbourhood Walmart, and looked all over for a lipstick, but couldn't find one. Then I saw the very pretty and white Flower Beauty section, and found the perfect lipstick. This was the Kiss Stick Velvet Lip Colour in the shade LS21 Desert Flower. This lipstick lasted through an entire wedding of eating, drinking, and dancing and I did not get a ring around my lips at all! It's so smooth and really does make your lips feel like velvet. It is the perfect burgundy lipstick, and honestly, I think it beats out any other lipstick, high or low, out there.

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I also picked up another lipstick in the shade LS3 Tender Tuberose. It's perfect for daytime, and has a mauve undertone to it. Another favourite. I bought the Loose Powder in the shade LO1 Light. I've never used a powder over top of my foundation before, despite probably needing it since I have an oily t-zone. Again, I was not disappointed. Lightweight and did the job perfectly.

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I will be trying out many more products, and definitely some of the brushes from Flower Beauty. Another bonus about the line is that nothing is tested on animals! These cosmetics feel high end but are at a very reasonable drugstore price. I'm a firm believer that one shouldn't be spending an arm and a leg on beauty products, but I still love to try out new things. Give Flower Beauty a go and your wallet will thank you!

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A Few Skincare Buys

Hello! I recently splurged and bought three new skincare products. It was just my birthday so I thought I'd treat myself. I purchased the Clarisonic Mia, the First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Lip Therapy, and the First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream. All three products are wonderful, but the Clarisonic is the one most worthy of a purchase! IMG_2994

Now, if it wasn't for my birthday and have some birthday money from last year, I would not have purchased it. It was something I definitely saved for and took a long time to consider buying. I have combination skin, and suffer from tons of blackheads on my nose. After using it for only three weeks, I have noticed a difference already. My skin is softer, clearer, and definitely cleaner. The Clarisonic is meant to clean down to 6 layers under your top layer of skin. So happy with the product, and I've been using it with my cost-effective Neutrogena Naturals products (See my previous post here). Worth the purchase.

The First Aid Beauty products are also pretty great. The Lip Therapy is moisturizing, and helps to keep the Autumn winds at bay. Would I switch back to my other more cost-effective lip balms? Yes. It's great, but other products do the same job. The Repair Cream is awesome on the other hand. I have pretty dry skin so I use it on my body, my hands, and my face if I need extra moisture. It's worth the buy if you have sensitive skin, and uber dry skin at that. My dad gets cracked fingers this time of year, and they've been completely healed with using this cream.

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Do you have these products? What are your thoughts on them?

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The Beauty of Sample Products

I don't know about you, but I love beauty products. From a young age, I've been fascinated with doing my hair and makeup (although I don't like wearing too much). The problem with loving beauty products is that my budget can't really afford to keep up with it. But I have a way of trying the products I want, without the huge price tag! The first thing you can do is go into your beauty store of choice (mine is Sephora), and pick up a couple of samples. Samples are a girl's (and guy's) best friend. They're free, give you a chance to try out that lux product, and you don't have to commit to a large price tag.

The second thing you can do, which really you should do before the sampling, is become a member of the store, if given the opportunity. Sephora has the beauty insider program where you gain points, can redeem them for products, and get exclusivity to new and exciting things. Its a win win in all regards. Again, utilize those perks and you'll get products on discount or for free! What could be better.

The last thing you can do, and this involves actually spending money, is buying a value set. Once you've sampled the product, and want to commit, wait for a value set to come out. You can to try new products that are most likely amazing, and you get the product you want for a fraction of the cost! I have an Origins value set coming in the mail, and I can't wait to use everything that comes into it. The whole set, which includes six of their bestselling products, is a fourth of the price! What a great deal. I'll be doing a post afterwards on the set.

Getting beauty products that you want is within your means as long as you're willing to wait for good deals or simply use those samples until you've saved the money.

Follow me on Instagram @melodyannep for updates on the blog, my pup Bingley, and lots of food.

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The many uses for Vaseline

Vaseline is not just sticky petroleum jelly; it is so many things. I swear by it because it really can do everything, and also because it's sooo inexpensive. I use it for five different things: 1. Body moisturizer. Of course it isn't going to perform miracles like a cocoa butter would, but it does heal my super dry skin in the winter. You can use it anywhere from your face (be careful if you have sensitive skin!) to your body, and it soothes and pampers it in such a budget-friendly way.

2. Lip balm. Vaseline just does what other lip balms can't in the winter. It protects and soothes chapped lips, and transforms them into soft, kissable lips. Pair it with a lipstick, and it'll give you a not so done up lip look that really is.

3. Eye makeup remover. Slather it over your eyelids and lashes, and voila! the stubborn makeup will come off! Upscale eye makeup removers can be sold for over $50, so don't fall into their allure and save your money!

4. Eyebrow tamer. Put a little vaseline on your unruly brows, and they'll be taken care of!

5. Nail care. When you're giving yourself a manicure, rub a little bit of vaseline into your cuticles. It really is the perfect way to keep your cuticles well-conditioned and healthy.

Give Vaseline a go and I'm sure you and your wallet will be happy!

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